JPMorgan tells US staff they’re due back in the office in July

Hannah Levitt and Sridhar Natarajan

JPMorgan Chase & Co. became the first major U.S. bank to mandate a return to offices for its entire U.S. workforce as soon as July.

The lender’s top decision-making body, led by Chief Executive Officer Jamie Dimon, said in a memo to staff Tuesday that it “would fully expect that by early July, all U.S.-based employees will be in the office on a consistent rotational schedule.”

JPMorgan Chase & Co. Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Jamie Dimon speaks during an interview with Bloomberg's Ed Hammond.

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Rotations will be subject to a 50% occupancy cap, until U.S. authorities revise their social distancing guidelines, the memo said. It advised workers that “with this timeframe in mind you should start making any needed arrangements to help with your successful return.”

Industry leaders have been girding for a return to offices since the earliest months of the pandemic last year. Dimon, who’s been going into the office since June, said in September that he sees economic and social damage from a longer stretch of working-from-home. Goldman Sachs Group Inc. CEO David Solomon earlier this year labeled the arrangement an “aberration” that needs to be fixed.

Prospects for returning to offices have gotten clearer in recent weeks as the vaccines have proliferated across the U.S. Citigroup Inc. has said it will start inviting more workers into the office beginning in July, while Wells Fargo & Co. said it hopes for a “more normal operating model” in September. Summer interns at JPMorgan and Goldman will be able to work from the offices, Bloomberg has reported.

“We firmly believe that working together in person is important for our culture, clients, businesses and teams, and we know that you’ll do your part to make it a positive experience that reflects our company at its best,” the firm’s leaders wrote in the memo.